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The Blue & Gray Press | October 18, 2017

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Separate but Equal is not Fair to LBGT

BY CARA MACDONALD

Last week’s editorial by Heather Brady brought up some valid arguments about the direction that gay rights activists should take in regards to same-sex marriage.

While I feel that Brady has her heart in the right place, I think there are misunderstandings of the reasons why equal marriage rights are so important to members of the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (LGBT) community and why the religious community condemns them.

To say that most LGBT people are not religious is probably an over generalization.  I can think of several of the top of my head that do not fit this assumption.  With that being said, however, it makes perfect sense why a homosexual individual might be more than a little turned off by organized religion.
From personal experience, I understand how difficult it is to be part of a community that preaches eternal damnation for those who were born with a sexual orientation other than straight.

When elite clergy members plague homosexuality as a threat to our society and to our families, I am surprised that so many homosexuals still attend church.  Would a black man join a white supremacy group? Unless you are Dave Chappelle, the answer is probably no.

Though, traditionally, marriages have been performed in places of worship, a religious ceremony means nothing in the eyes of the state.  Without a marriage license, it is not valid.  Although a Las Vegas wedding may not constitute sacred, no one can deny that it is still a marriage.

LGBT rights activists should not settle for civil unions, even those that grant “equal” rights to couples.  Our nation’s history has showed us that “separate, but equal,” is not actually equal, nor is it just.

Though many quibble over semantics, in reality, objections to same-sex marriage have little to do with changing the definition of a word.  In fact, it has little to do with religion either.

Those who object to same-sex relationships are nothing more than ignorant bigots who do not understand that homosexuality is as much of a choice as the color of one’s skin.

What the LGBT community is really looking for is acceptance: the recognition that the love between two people of the same sex is no less significant than the love between a man and a woman.  But until the rest of us can see that “separate, but equal” isn’t cutting it anymore, we have a lot of work that still needs to be done.

Comments

  1. Andrew

    “Those who object to same-sex relationships are nothing more than ignorant bigots.” Hmm…that sounds like the GENERALIZATION of an IGNORANT BIGOT. Gotta love illiberal liberals. They are all about accepting anybody’s opinion, until it differs with their own. Whatever happened to true liberals?

    And what on earth do you mean by transgender?

  2. Jaclyn

    I agree with Andrew completely. You are classifying me as an ignorant bigot and you have no idea why I object to same sex marriages. Just because I do not agree with it does not mean that I do not recognize that you are born with your sexual orientation in your genetic make up. In addition, liberals like to see themselves as open minded and accepting and yet, if you disagree with same sex marriages it is assumed by a great majority of liberals that you are a god fearing, gay hating, stuck up, close minded brat.

  3. Briana

    I agree with the two above in that my dissenting opinion from yours does not mean I haven’t considered all sides of the argument before coming to my own conclusions. Because I disagree dose not mean I’m a close minded bigot.

    I also don’t understand what you mean when you say objections to same-sex marriage have little to do with religion when the first half of your article is almost entirely devoted to the religious objections to same-sex relationships (an albeit one-sided, skewed representation).

  4. Dan

    to Andrew, Briana, and Jaclyn:

    while your point may be valid, simply stating that you aren’t a bigot doesn’t mean you aren’t, nor does it prove that Ms. Macdonald is incorrect in her assumption. i’m not saying that you are or are not, but why don’t you take up the point in a more constructive manner–i.e. actually debating the point –instead of simply stating that you are not a bigot and and attacking the writer and liberalism? for instance, why don’t you explain why you aren’t a bigot, or why most people aren’t bigots for disagreeing with gay marriage? i for one would be very interested in seeing some points of view that aren’t inherently bigoted or religiously-backed.

    to Ms. Macdonald:

    from all my discussions on the topic, it seems that it DOES come down to whether or not people believe that homosexuality is a choice or not. the issue is complicated by the inclusion of bisexuality, and people who have “switched teams.” the argument i’ve seen is that if people can “choose” these partners of the opposite sex or same sex, then homosexuality is therefore a choice and not a civil rights issue, which addresses inherent differences in people that would otherwise cause discrimination. in other words, homosexuality becomes, for these pundits, a choice that can be undone, and therefore an issue that is unworthy of falling under the larger civil rights banner. in order to address this issue head-on, you should certainly look at it from this point of view. in the end, it seems like there simply isn’t enough understanding of human sexuality to decisively say whether or not homosexuality is a choice or not. there are many people, obviously, who would say that it isn’t a choice. but to disregard those whose sexual and life partners have been (satisfactorily) of both sexes would be irresponsible when the the decision of this being included into civil rights is at stake.

    a few months ago, during a dinner with a buddy, his gay friend, and his gay friend’s date, we discussed this same issue. his gay friend’s date said something that astounded us all: why? why do gays WANT marriage? why not have something else that heterosexuals could not have? why has it become so important to gays to be accepted into a society whose acceptance of homosexuality is “queer eye for the gay guy” and the even more stereotypically flamboyant (though undoubtedly talented) dance crew (of “america’s best dance crew”) vogue evolution?

  5. Jaclyn

    Okay, here is a non-religious argument to why same sex-marriage is wrong:

    As a psychology major who has studied sexual disorders homosexuality is as much a part of you from birth as pedophilia. Is pedophilia something that should be accepted in our society? Do we encourage pedophiles to follow their hearts?

    On another note, do your research on the Spartans and how homosexual relations is considered one of the major contributers to the down fall of their society. Have you ever heard the saying, “History repeats itself.” America needs to learn from history and look out for the good of the whole society instead of getting caught up in the politically correct nature of our culture.

  6. D

    This article is depressing. Rather than examining the issue thoughtfully, Cara instead goes on a rather directionless rant against the “ignorant bigots” that disagree with her. This is unfortunate, because she clearly doesn’t grasp the possible different reasons people can rely on to oppose gay marriage. Instead, she opts for a rather simplistic formulation that ignores the various nuanced positions that are possible. Consider:

    It is perfectly possible to believe that homosexuality is immoral, and believe that gay marriage should be the law of the land. It is also perfectly possible to believe that homosexual relationships are completely moral, and believe that homosexual marriages should not be legal. Furthermore, Cara either does not know about, or cannot grasp, the distinction actions and orientation. Aside from truly fringe groups like the Westboro Baptist Church, Christian groups do not generally condemn individuals for being attracted to members of their own sex, but rather for acting on those inclinations. Regardless of whether you share the belief that homosexual actions are immoral, that is an important detail that shows up nowhere in Cara’s article.

    Unfortunately, Cara doesn’t seem to have made a real effort to understand the opposition’s actual opinions – and so, in her own way, is just as ignorant of their values as they are of hers.

    Perhaps this is merely the result of a very limited allowed length for Cara’s article; I can’t know for sure. But I doubt that this is so – Cara seems more interested in insulting her ideological opponents than in engaging with them in debate, and that is hardly necessary for an article of any length. Ironically enough, I’m not entirely opposed to what Cara wants. I don’t support gay marriage per se, but I do agree that there should be some sort of legal redress of the situation, and that our current social and Constitutional values don’t allow for a continuation of the status quo. I don’t believe, however, that one must be for or against gay marriage in order to believe in fair, reasonable public discourse – and in that respect, I’m afraid this article is not very helpful.

  7. Alex

    To Jaclyn: Pedophilia and Homosexuality are incomparable. Pedophilia is “frowned upon” (for lack of a better term at the moment) because the targeted victim of pedophilia is too young to properly understand the sexual advances of a much older and more sexually mature person; therefore, a pedophile cannot properly garner consent to engage in sexual activity with a child, which is rape.

    Homosexuality is TOTALLY DIFFERENT in that both partners in a relationship are able to understand the situation and give their consent.

    That is why people encourage homosexuals to “follow their hearts”, as you say; it does not cause lasting damage to either person in a relationship when they both want to be there. It is not the same as encouraging a pedophile to “follow their heart” and abuse children.

  8. Edmund

    The title of this article is puzzling. How are homosexuals seperate? How are they equal? I think in reality they are integrated but unequal (in terms of marriage rights).

  9. Rebekah Anderson

    Since Cara directed this article at me a few months ago, I thought I’d put my 2 cents in. I’ve since graduated and moved to the other side of the world… so this spring’s controversy is behind me. But this issue will be around for a LONG time, so keep debating it. Be respectful and learn something from the other side. If you don’t find anywhere to agree then you’re not doing a very good job communicating. I hope UMW can come to an agreement on gay rights that any open-minded person can be content with.

    P.S. Don’t write articles where you call someone an ignorant bigot because of their religious beliefs.